As someone who appreciates nice office furniture, I was keen to try out ErgoTune Supreme V3. Selling for between $700-$850, it’s considerably cheaper than elite brands like Herman Miller and Steelcase.
However, the Supreme is definitely more expensive than budget office chairs you can buy at Officeworks or Ikea.
ErgoTune’s third iteration attempts to walk the tightrope between luxury and el cheapo options, offering a fully customisable ergonomic experience at a reasonable price. Let’s see how it fares.
The company was kind enough to send me two review units over the years, which you’ll see in the photos below. Why two?
Previously, I used a Herman Miller Aeron for over two years, so I’m in a good position to compare the Supreme against more expensive counterparts.
5 Things I Like About The ErgoTune Supreme.
I was expecting the Supreme to look and feel like another mass-consumer home office chair, but I was pleasantly surprised.
1. Fits Like A Tailored Suit.
Above: The ErgoTune Supreme looks modern and premium in a WFH setup.
If you’re like most people, your home office chair probably doesn’t fit you well. The top 5 complaints are:
- Seat pan is too low/high.
- Seat edge doesn’t offer enough thigh support.
- Lumbar support is nonexistent/unnatural.
- Armrests are in the wrong spot.
- The chair aggravates your lower back.
ErgoTune set out to solve all those issues by creating an office chair with the highest possible amount of personalisation options:
- Gas lift choices tailor the chair to petite (140-159cm), medium (160-179cm) and tall (180-210cm) bodies. This is one of the main improvements introduced in the V3. I’m tall (200cm) and find that office chairs make me sit comically low, so this is a very welcome feature.
- TriTune headrest is a fancy way of saying that the headrest is adjustable for height, reach and tilt. I’ve never been a big fan of office chair headrests until I’ve tried this.
- Lumbar support offers 9 height settings and a tension adjustment. Some spines are more curved than others, and ATLAS, as the lumbar support is known, allows the Supreme V3 to fit just about everyone.
- Armrests adjust in 5 dimensions. Wait, what? This doesn’t mean the armrests enable time travel through black holes. It simply means they adjust for height (most important), reach and width. And they swivel on two pivot joints – one at the front and one at the rear.
- Seat depth adjustment is rare at this price point (it’s not even available on the ultra-expensive Aeron!) and allows you to dial in the right amount of under-knee support. Without this adjustment, you’re more likely to restrict blood flow to your legs.
This is a mind-boggling amount of adjustment options for a chair in this price range.
2. Smooth Recline Motion.
Above: the ErgoTune Supreme V3 in Coral Red looks nice when paired with a black standing desk.
I’m famous for reclining and rocking back in my chair during meetings, which is why I kept my Aeron for so long.
You instantly feel overdue for a promotion to the C-suite and imagine a whisky glass and a cigar in each of your ergonomically supported hands.
- I’m happy to report that the ErgoTune Supreme V3 gives the Aeron a good run for its money.
- Its synchro-tilt mechanism reclines the back faster than the seat angle, keeping you nicely supported throughout the recline – and without lifting your feet off the ground.
The Supreme’s frame is on the rigid side, but allows some flexion in the backrest to help you move throughout your workday.
In contrast, the Aeron, with its bucket seat design, is even more rigid – and keeps you locked in more firmly. Meanwhile, a lot of budget chairs are so flimsy and bendy that you feel like you swim around in them.
What is Synchro-Tilt?
It’s a mechanism that prevents your feet from rising as you recline. It achieves this by lowering a chair’s backrest at a different ratio to the seat pan (usually 2:1). A chair with a synchro-tilt mechanism must have a waterfall front edge, or it may press into the back of your thighs when you recline.
3. Attractive Design (For A Mid-Range Ergonomic Chair).
Above: attention to detail elevates the overall look and feel of the Supreme. I like the metal-look logo accents and the straight-through design of the lumbar support tension adjustment mechanism.
Let’s face it. Most ergonomic chairs are ugly, bulky and likely to clash with your beautiful office decor.
- The ErgoTune Supreme V3 has clean, modern lines. It’s almost – dare I say – attractive.
But I’m not going to lie to you like most so-called “influencers” and say it’s stunning to look at.
While it does a great job of hiding its many mechanisms and their associated bulk, it still looks like an ergonomic chair.
It’s not as gorgeous as, let’s say, the Herman Miller Cosm. Then again, that’s not a fair comparison, as the Cosm is 4X more expensive and has fewer adjustments to hide within its frame.
In case you don’t know, three colours are available – red, blue and black.
ErgoTune’s Coral Red colour sits at the intersection of orange and red hues. It will work well as a contrast piece in a home office with a monochromatic and very dark or light colour palette.
4. Risk-Free Returns.
One of the biggest problems with purchasing direct-to-consumer office furniture online, without seeing it in person, is the risk of being stuck with a chair you don’t like.
ErgoTune takes this problem off your hands by offering fuss-free, zero-cost returns.
- They’ll arrange for the chair to be picked up at your home and cover the cost of return shipping – as long as you initiate the return within 21 calendar days of receiving it.
This is a game-changer.
Even though the Supreme is designed to fit almost anybody, the seating experience is intensely personal. I wouldn’t blow almost $800 on a chair online without the option to send it back.
5. Hybrid Mesh Feels Nice On The Skin.
Above: the DuraWeave mesh looks great and feels nice to the touch.
Mesh office chairs tend to polarise people. You’ll either love sitting on standard mesh or hate it.
I firmly belong in the former camp because I prefer:
- The feeling of being suspended in the air.
- The ventilation only mesh can provide (as someone with a high metabolism and living in a sub-tropical climate, I find non-mesh chairs too sweat-inducing).
- The look of mesh. Padded fabric chairs – even the premium options like the Steelcase Leap – look and feel very cheap. They always remind me of 1990’s cubicles.
ErgoTune set out to create a hybrid mesh that gives you the best of both worlds by marrying the softness of fabric with the ventilation properties of classic polyethylene mesh.
Does it work? Yes, very well – with one caveat.
Many worry that the mesh will feel too firm, but I find it just right. It offers a very nice, suspended seating experience.
But if you’ve never sat on mesh before, you may need to give your body a couple of weeks to get used to it.
If you’re apprehensive about buying your first mesh chair, don’t forget ErgoTune’s 21-day trial. It allows you to road-test not just the Supreme, but the concept of sitting on mesh chairs in general.
6. Assembly Is A Piece Of Cake.
Above: the assembly instructions are larger than a small child.
The Supreme V3 will arrive at your doorstep in a huge (77 x 64 x 37cm) cardboard box. You’ll need to spend about 20 minutes assembling it.
- The assembly instructions come on a giant wall-sized poster. Very irreverent touch, ErgoTune – nice one.
- All of the parts and bolts are clearly labelled. A lot of thought went into ensuring that your assembly experience is as painless as possible.
How does the packaging score on the sustainability front? Pretty good. Foam protects the base and the gas strut, but the rest of the packaging is made from 100% recyclable cardboard.
(Related: How To Choose An Office Chair).
7. Unusually Generous Warranty.
ErgoTune offers an impressive 8 and 4-year warranty coverage on the chair’s frame and mechanisms.
In a clever win-win deal, the company will extend it to 12 and 8 years if you share a photo or a video of yourself in your Supreme V3 on social media.
|Parts Covered||Standard Warranty||Extended Warranty|
|Skeletal frame, aluminium frame, wheelbase, frame.||8 years||12 years|
|Lumbar support, central mechanism hub, armrest mechanism, castors.||4 years||8 years|
This is a ridiculously long warranty period, on par with ultra-premium brands like Steelcase and Herman Miller. You’ll get bored of the chair long before it starts falling apart.
3 Things I Dislike About The ErgoTune Supreme.
While the ErgoTune Supreme V3 is one of the best office chairs on the market, it’s not without flaws.
Here are the 3 main err, areas for improvement I’ve identified during my 2 year-long ownership period.
1. Coloured Mesh Can Stain Easily.
Above: my chair is almost back to showroom condition, but I’ll think twice before eating lunch behind my desk again.
The main downside of the fabric-infused DuraWeave mesh is its proclivity for attracting stains.
I’m a relatively neat person, but I did manage to leave a stain on the mesh of the first (Coral Red) review unit while eating a sandwich at my desk.
It almost disappeared after hitting it with a few rounds of detergent, but the seat doesn’t look the same. The colour is a little uneven – especially when you look closely.
Think twice about choosing the pastel-coloured Coral Red and Acqua Blue options if you tend to eat at your desk.
2. Premium Armpads Would Be Nice.
Above: Arm pads swivel and adjust in every direction, and a premium option would be great.
The fancy 5D armrests produce very satisfying (and expensive-sounding) clicks while in transit, but I would love it if ErgoTune offered a premium pad option.
I’ve learned to live with it because it’s durable and generous in size, but softer leather would look and feel better.
I’d gladly pay $100 extra to have that as an option.
3. Headrest Doesn’t Lock Fully.
Above: notice how the headrest locks off for height and reach, but rotates on an open ball joint for tilt.
The TriTune headrest adjusts in three dimensions but locks off only in two. Tilt relies on a friction joint to stop, but any decent amount of pressure on it will cause it to point down.
I find it necessary to reset the headrest at the beginning or the end of almost every sitting session.
I dislike office chair headrests and would prefer the option to remove mine altogether. Unfortunately, it’s not possible without leaving an unsightly mounting bracket in place.
How The ErgoTune Supreme V3 Scored.
The ErgoTune offers a lot for the price. You’ll find cheaper alternatives, but none offer the same level of quality or adjustability.
|Ease Of Assembly||5/5|
The ErgoTune Supreme is:
Frequently Asked Questions About The ErgoTune Supreme V3.
I know that choosing an ergonomic office chair can be an endless rabbithole. Here are some questions you may be wrestling with.
What’s The Build Quality Like?
Very good. I’ve sat in more expensive chairs (e.g., Humanscale Liberty which sells for about $1,200) that felt less premium than the Supreme.
This chair is a heavy sucker, and punches above its weight (ha!) in the build quality department.
What’s The Best Place To Buy One?
The Supreme chair is available to Australian customers only through the ErgoTune website. ErgoTune is a direct-to-consumer brand without a physical showroom.
What’s The Lumbar Support Like?
I like it, but I suspect that many will find it stiff and on the aggressive side.
People who experience back pain as a result of slouching will appreciate the extra level of discipline it introduces to their posture.
My Verdict On The ErgoTune Supreme.
The ErgoTune Supreme is still the best ergonomic chair in the $700-850 price range as of November 2023. It nudges out direct competitors like the Ergohuman V2 because of its multiple sizing options and 21-day risk-free trial with kerbside pickup.
The next step up from here is the Steelcase Leap. It’s a better chair overall, but it costs $1,500.
Premium options like the Herman Miller Cosm, Aeron and Embody are better again, but are well in the $2,500+ price range. The 3X – 5X price jump is hard to justify, unless you’re looking for a status symbol.